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tv   [untitled]    September 22, 2010 1:00pm-1:30pm PST

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>> good afternoon. i would like to welcome everyone back from the summer break. all of our staff was hard at work during this hiatus we have had. it is wednesday -- it is tuesday, september 14, 2:00 p.m..
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[tolroll call -- all present] item seven has -- item 11 has been taken off the calendar and will be continued to the next meeting. the next item is approval of the minutes of the july 27 special meeting and minutes of the august 10 regular meeting. is there any provision? president crowley: colleagues, any additions, corrections, or deletions? any public comment? seeing and hearing at 9, all those in favor please signify -- seeing and hearing none, all those in favor please signify. >> next, public comment for matters within commission
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jurisdiction but not on today's agenda. i believe i have a speaker card on this item. president crowley: thank you. >> commissioners, my name is francisco decosta. i have been away. i visited countries where i got the opportunity to speak to many community organizations, and also to visit facilities such as we have here in san francisco. prior to me going, i was privy to some public documents on our infrastructure, having worked at presidio san francisco on infrastructure projects. i see a lot of activity, some good, some bad, and some ugly.
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commissioners, you know, because of this economy, we are privileged because of our forward planning. at one time, we were supposed to address both the waste water and the clean water project. maybe there is only one commissioner here who participated in the earlier workshops, when mr. dennis normandy was on this commission. some of us from the community put a lot of effort to see that we would go to a better place. but the actions led to our just
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focusing on the clean water, which we are doing now. and soon we will be addressing the waste water, which will impact san francisco in a big way. the reason i am here is to point out to the commissioners, in view of what has happened at san bruno, with the infrastructure there, how when we tear up our roads, how when we expose our utilities -- to look at our utilities in a realistic manner. now, this may seem to be very easy, but it is very difficult. so i am calling upon the engineers to work on this.
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i know we cannot expose all this information because of 9/11, but one of the reasons i am speaking to you is that from the inception, before we begin this wastewater project, we do it in the right way. thank you very much. president crowley: thank you. next speaker, please. >> good afternoon, commissioners, and welcome back. one of the reasons i came today is that i had heard from different people in my community that commissioner ellis was going to be gone. i am glad to see you are here and i hope you are being reconsidered to stay here. i hope the other commissioners support you. we need you. you have been very good at working with us in the community. these are the things that need to be done. i know all the commissioners know that. since you have chosen me as your
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goodwill ambassador for sola, i have to say that, because i want people to know you work with the community. you have your staff working with us. i want people to know you are doing what you can do for your community, in support of the community, and that you are here. every motion and thing you do is from your heart. thank you very much. have a blessed day. >> mining is joshua. first of all, i wanted to second the sentiments of ms. jackson. it is good to see you, commissioner ellis. i am looking forward to the discussion of community benefits. since it is not on the agenda, i want to ask if there is an update on the state of solar in san francisco, and how we are going to get the committee to work on the next round of puc
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project. i know a lot of us are eagerly waiting to see the sunset reservoir switched to get turned on and get a walk through for some of the community folks to get people back into the solar frame of mind again. can community folks go out and see how it is shaping up? >> now might be a good time to jump out of order. ed harrington, our general manager, has some announcements to make. >> as you know, the first announcement was that we have selected a general manager for external affairs. that position was vacated earlier this year when laura left. if you recall, we were changing the position to not only be in charge of relations and communications, but also take the lead on environmental sustainability issues and the
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community benefits jobs discussions we have been having. we did a search. i am pleased to announce the result is that commissioner juliet ellis is the new general manager for external affairs for the puc. [applause] we were able to convince her that four to eight hours a month was not enough. welcome, and thank you very much for accepting our offer. commissioner ellis: thank you to the fellow commissioners, the staff, and the community partners. part of what makes the position so attractive is the ability to work on this more than eight hours a month. i look forward to continuing to work in this different role. >> i would like to add to the general manager -- this is brilliant. [laughter]
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who would have thought. it really is. i am so pleased. we are very, very fortunate. you have worked on both sides. [laughter] >> i also would like to chime in. i was in the same position, where i had heard juliet might be moving on. i was broken hearted because she has been such a great colleague and ally on these important issues. i think this is a wonderful solution and opportunity. i think we will really be able to get some amazing things done with juliet in her new role. congratulations. we are so excited to work with you in this new capacity. president crowley: -- president crowley: let me echo of that and
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say i am looking forward to no longer being the junior member of the commission. now we are going to talk more often. i think this is a great jumping off spot to collaborating with you and the community, and working with you and through you to get where we need to go in this organization. thank you for accepting the offers. >> it is a good match. >> the commissioners have received electronically copies of all the communications sent to us since the last regular meeting. if you have any issues or points you would like to raise or ed regarding the advanced calendar, if you could also note those. the commissioners have also received the two indicated staff reports. >> i have some questions. first of all, i want to thank you for putting on the budget
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hearings well in advance. we usually wait until the last moment and scramble around. i do want some clarification. not the budget hearing, but under january 20, that is a thursday. but we are adopting -- is this a regular -- are we making this a regular meeting on january 20? >> we have several ceqa reviews coming up. as you know, the planning commission meets on thursdays. there will be several instances where we will be asking you if you will consider having a regular meeting or a special meeting of the commission the same day as the planning commission so that if they adopt the findings the commission can do it the same day. >> i see. going back to the schedule budget hearing -- january 13, i
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believe, is the regular meeting day. no -- it's a thursday. january 11 would be our regular meeting. i wanted to ask for an update of the 10-year financial plan. is that going to be a lengthy discussion? and if not, could we have it on our regular meeting of january 11? >> todd reedstrom, assistant general manager. we would be happy to schedule that as early as you would like that. in addition to hearing the update on the 10-year financial plan, right as you're going into your deliberations will also be updating that. we will report information. as well, we have a place holder in early december for some pre-
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budget discussions of budget policy setting that we wanted to come before you and give you an early indication of key trends in water consumption and waste water treatment to help inform your policy decision for the upcoming budget hearing. so we would be happy to move that to whatever day you would like. >> i am just trying to be efficient with our time. i should not say it that way. if it is going to be a lengthy discussion, i think the 13th is fine. if it is not going to be, we could incorporate it with our regular meeting of the 11th. that is something we have to hear from you. >> i think it is a great suggestion. it will not be that link the. we will need five to 10 questions -- 5 to 10 minutes depending on your questions.
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as you come into your budget hearings, we can look up the next few years. i know you are very interesting -- very interested in seeing what the about your fifth impact is. i look forward to being able to summarize those in five minutes and be able to give you the impact on the rates, and of course answer any questions you would have on that. >> altogether, the discussion would be about a half hour? >> about 20 minutes to 30 minutes. >> that goes to something i wanted to ask about as well. you had the preliminary budget discussion with the commission. that is something we have asked for. i appreciate your putting that on. one of the things i hoped to get from that is the discussion of the plan in a pro forma, if you
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will. there is a 10 year plan we will be updating. you should be able to get pretty close on that. i would like to be able to focus on some of the big-picture questions we have -- improved levels of service for the clean water program. there will be some budget in rate impact. we have looked in the past at some pretty sizable rate increases. we have talked about constraining that in some way. i would love to have on the 14th a discussion that focuses at that level. what are we trying to accomplish in the budget? what kind of constraints to we want to put on it before the budget comes to us? then my expectation would be that after we go to the budget process that the adoption of the 10-year plan should be pretty straightforward, if we know what
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target we are trying to hit earlier in the process. and what i am not especially interested in -- and i do not know what the policy is going to be. i am not especially interested in having an opportunity to identify a pet project of mine ahead of time. if i have any of those i can tell you anyway, but that is not really the focus. my focus would be from a large business perspective. what do we want our financials to be looking like? what do we want to make sure is accomplished? how does this coming budget it into that? >> thank you. the general manager's budget hearings will be happening in november and early december. he has already tasked us to have those ready for you. we will update for the general manager during those hearings, based upon the status quo which
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you have already adopted in your 10-year capital plan and the existing levels of service. we will update those again for you to make them fresh at the january. in addition, the december 14 meeting -- it will be helpful if you can start listing how you would like the budget displayed. in previous years, sometimes you wanted it program radically. other times, you wanted financial metrics as far as what the cost of $1 million would be in the average monthly bill. -- in previous years soc, somets you wanted it programmatically. the biggest picture to be starting with is that between the economy and water conservation our revenues are down.
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while we certainly have not been impacted as much as general fund departments, it will probably be a time of constraint in the puc. you should expect not to see a lot of brand new things show up unless something else is traded for it. commissioner moran: i think december is kind of late in the process. you will have done a lot of your work. i would like to see how satisfactory that is. if we were to give a change of direction, december would be pretty late to do it. we will see how that plays out and can adjust schedules and other things. commissioner caen: to follow up on what you just said, maybe you can help us identify on if there is something that can be traded out, if there is something emerging that seems to be a priority everybody seems in agreement with, to come back to us and said they knew we can
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give a little less money to that to be able to do this. >> anything else? president crowley: in the issue tracking, you did at the -- you did add a review of the hedghet assessment and the capital projects we are talking about there. one thing that occurs to me would be awfully helpful at some point is also to have a discussion about the consequence of issuing debt against hetch hetchy. it does strike me -- it is certainly not new. it strikes me it could be a tricky credit to evaluate.
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i think some discussion of that and how we want to deal with that, how we structure that into the financial plan would be helpful. it might as well be at the same time we are talking about this. >> we have done a whole lot of work around that. we can bring it forward. if prop 26 passes, it could change that dramatically. prop. 26 is a bit of a sleeper right now. it is not getting much attention. in its simplest form, it would tend to have power revenues for government agencies treated in many ways like prop 218 requires for water and wastewater. the most immediate impact would be that -- for example, right now we provide power to the airport tenants. the airport tenants pay us lower than they would pay pg&e, but pay us more than it costs us to
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generate the power. we use those extra proceeds to finance other programs. prop. 26 would say it cannot -- you cannot charge more than it costs you to generate your power. it would not allow government agencies to generate any income to be used for other projects. it would be a major impact on general fund to the city, all of the programs we have been doing using hetchy money. president crowley: it sounds like prop 16 revisited. >> only municipally owned utilities, not on investor-owned utilities. i believe the board of supervisors will have a item introduced to have the city go on record against the proposition. president crowley: i noticed also you have now -- commissioner moran: i noticed you have also scheduled the
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allocations. that is well in advance of the end of the year deadline. it does strike me that may take more than one meeting. i do not know if that is the way it is planned on there. i think it shows a decision as opposed to a setup. >> i am the assistant general manager for water. it should be on decision on december 14. november is just a discussion to make sure we are on the same page. vice president vietor: i am sorry. i had a follow-up on prop. 26. how would that affect cca? >> it would not have a dramatic impact on cca, because the way we are envisioning it is it would simply pass through the cost and only the cost, and we
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would not have any kind of profit. when we said profit, if we charge somebody a pg&e rate, that is more than our cost. that is where the profit comes in. nobody pays more than if the use pg&e, but it would lower it to what our cost of generation is. to the extent we used hetchy power in cca, we would only charge generation costs. vice president vietor: would that impact the negotiation of the contract with the cca provider because of the profit? >> i do not think so. again, it would only impact that, and potentially in a positive way, if we were going to be buying power from another municipal entity. it would limit how much it could charge us. that is probably on the margin,
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not a major part of it. president crowley: it takes all of the financial incentive out of any energy conservation. >> exactly. vice president vietor: that is one in -- i am from the city attorney -- >> i am from the city attorney's office. that is only one interpretation. that is only one reading which could be given to it. >> we will give you a fact sheet on that. vice president vietor: in november -- on the november ballot? >> yes, it is. president crowley: anything that needs to be received? commissioner moran: there were several things distributed with the agenda binder that are in essence staff reports that were
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not listed. they in some cases were pretty important and significant stuff. i am suggesting that they should be. >> a number of them were received at the end of the week. there were sent out immediately. those show up on the next -- but what i can do is start bringing amended ledger summary is that the show everything that has been updated. those will show up on the next report. commissioner moran: what confuses me on that is they were distributed to us, and i figured if there were timely to be distributed to us there were timely to be posted. >> i will do an amended versions of this so everything sent out to you is listed at the meetings with a matching list. some things come in at the end and roll over to the next meeting. commissioner moran: just to
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point out -- there was a wsip annual project report that was interesting in that it responds to issues that were raised by people from the state department of health. i think there were useful discussions in those cases. the commission essentially pointed out, in case we did not know it already, that the cost of delay on some of these projects is not simply the cost of inflation to the project. it is a prolongation of risk. that is important to think -- to keep in mind. it is a point well taken. the west side recycled water project -- there is an update to how that is proceeding. that is a project that is about $8,000 an acre foot. it is a significant project from
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a variety of standpoints. as we look at the triple bottom line, this is pretty expensive. that is going to go to environmental review and a lot more discussion before it comes to us for action, but i wanted to point that out. four audits are in there. they are exactly the kind of audits i hope we are doing for our internal operations, making sure things do not fall into disrepair over time. i guess all of those were done by the controller. and then the last one -- there was a memo on the price of alternate water supplies. that gets into calculated unit cost, the cost per acre foot of some projects we are doing. i think starting a baseline of information will be very useful to us as we have water supply discussions in the future. thank you for those. if we can somehow coordinate
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these things so they are posted when they are distributed? >> yes. president crowley: anything else? todd, it was also going through our information, and i saw the rebuttals article in the west side observer. i thought it was good to get the communication tool out to folks so they know we are capable and functional in terms of watching their money. thank you for putting that in. >> thank you. >> mr. president, the next item is item 6, report of the general manager. >> we have had part of the report. a couple other items that are not on the agenda -- one is that the police department is making some changes in its management. we are saying goodbye to captain

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